Another Year Ends

The Juggler of Our Lady

by Paulo Coelho

Christmas Eve came around. And precisely on that day, a special miracle happened in Melk Abbey: Our Lady, carrying the baby Jesus in her arms, decided to descend to Earth to visit the monastery.

All the priests lined up and each of them stood proudly before the Virgin trying to pay homage to the Madonna and her Son. One of them displayed the beautiful paintings that decorated the place, another showed a copy of a Bible that had taken a hundred years to be written and illustrated, while a third recited the names of all the saints.

At the very end of the line, young novice Buckhard anxiously waited his turn. His parents were simple people, and all that they had taught him was to toss balls up in the air and do some juggling.

When it came his turn, the other priests wanted to put an end to all the homage that had been paid, since the ex-juggler had nothing important to add and might even mar the image of the abbey.

Nevertheless, deep in his heart he also felt a great need to give something of himself to Jesus and the Virgin. Feeling very ashamed before the reproachful gaze of his brothers, he took some oranges from his pocket and began to toss them in the air and catch them in his hands, creating a beautiful circle in the air just as he used to do when he and his family traveled to all the fairs in the region.

At that instant, the baby Jesus, lying in Our Lady’s lap, began to clap his hands with joy. And it was to young Buckhard that the Virgin held out her arms to let him hold the smiling child for a few moments.

based in a medieval legend


So it’s that time of the year again…the holiday season! Officially Christmas Day and New Year’s Day are the holidays permitted by the laws of this land. However, since the these 2 special events have a good 8 days in between, thus begins the nonstop yearly ritual of slacking off in the full working days.

Tun Mahathir once lamented that there are too many holidays in Malaysia, in fact we are some of world’s nations having the most holidays! I agreed with his opinion and I still do. During this month, I slowed down my staff’s working zeal since everybody from the government departments to the construction workers have already declared their own holidays. Every Malaysian seems to be cool about it, this unwritten tradition of ours.

I remember about 10 years ago I did a contract with a certain government agency which happened to fall during this time of the year. Naturally, everybody was into the holiday mood except me. I wanted to work the boys towards the edge. Then I learnt that even the government agency’s staff were in the Christmas-New Year mood so I backed down. However not before I received an earful from the then officer-in-charged.

People, I learned, are very sensitive when it comes to their holidays. Some would go for family vacations or gatherings. And the rest would booze themselves through to the New Year!

(Personally, I would prefer a quiet Christmas and New Year’s Day but that ain’t happening. I have to be present in these open houses.)

Looking back on this year I learned many lessons concerning human nature. I was riddled with betrayal, humiliation, people’s greed,jealousy and disappointments. This year my idealism, as well as my innocence, died.

I have to be extra careful in the world and I have to overhaul my priorities.

I have been spending so much time with NGOs that I neglected my business project last year. This year I’ve been spending time trying to rope in a few business opportunities. By this time, it’s still a work in progress but I expect a breakthrough in 2010.

While I was pursuing business opportunities, something in me has changed. I feel I can no longer fit back in the NGO world doing volunteering services. When you’re a member of an   NGO, you’re working with people from all walks of life so you’d have to be tolerant with one another.

I was able to those things in 2008 but not anymore.

Now in December 2009, I find myself unable to fit back in. After all the things that I’ve been through this year, there’s no more turning back. I tried going back but it’s no longer the same. But I would still help when I’m being asked to. I’m still a friend to them, just not as committed as before. So it’s pretty clear that I have to now move on.

So what do I have planned for 2010? I guess this is the right time to create my New Year’s Resolution. So here goes…

1) A fully completed and operational business by mid-2010. I’ve been involved with this project        since it’s inception. I’m putting my focus into this one and that’s a promise.

2) Building our new home and moving in by Christmas 2010. The missus and me have been    talking about having a house since 1999! It’s about time to make that discussion a reality.

…and that’s it! Just 2 big ones for next year. The rest of the world will have to wait. Yes I’m prepared for the consequences that’ll come in realizing these 2 New Year’s Resolutions.

I won’t be posting anything more for this year so I take this opportunity to wish everybody…

A Merry Christmas And A Happy New Year!

Be good to one another everyone and God Bless!

December Song (I Dreamed Of Christmas)

written by George Michael & David Austin

Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas
May your every New Year dream come true

Sweet December song
The melody that saved me
On those less than silent nights
When snow would fall upon my bed
White sugar from Jesus
And take me to the day
She could always smile
The Virgin Child would always show, you see
Just to save me
(Just to save me)

There was always Christmas time
To wipe the year away
I guess that Mum and Dad decided
That the war would have to wait

There was always Christmas time
Jesus came to stay
I could believe in peace on Earth
And I could watch TV all day
So I dreamed of Christmas

Maybe since you’ve gone
I went a little crazy
God knows they can see (the child)
But the snow that falls upon my bed
That loving I needed
Falls every single day
For each and every child
The Virgin smiles for all to see
But you kept her from me

There was always Christmas time
To wipe the year away
I guess that Mum and Dad decided
That the war would have to wait

There was always Christmas time
Jesus came to stay
I could believe in peace on Earth
And I could watch TV all day
And so I dreamed of Christmas
Yes, I dreamed like you

Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas
May your every New Year dream come true


3 thoughts on “Another Year Ends”

  1. Last New Years Eve I said I would lose 10 kg, walk a pilgrimage to Rome, get closer to my friend in church, and meet Paulo Coelho. I lost 11 kg, walked a pilgrimage to Nidaros (300 km), didn’t get closer to my friend in church (but met him once for 4 minutes) and I didn’t meet Paulo Coelho (but was just a few miles away from him in Copenhagen). Look better than Madonna (- which was a joke!) I really did what I could to reach my goals.

    Goals for 2010 :

    Hoping my guardians will stay close. I need them so much right now! :

    1. Find my path for the future – private, work, spirituality, healing.
    2. Write down stories from my spiritual path.
    3. Be active on 2-3 arenas – not 10.

  2. Beautiful and true…
    love enough to put the strife on hold for one day, for a child.

    Love, and thank you for this post and song.

    Jane : ) xo

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